If this were a movie, then I’d be sitting on a battered chair, in an unheated room, squinting in the guttering flicker of a candle stump while I crumple successive sheets of paper and then angrily throw them onto the floor. Writing takes commitment and the nerve to take chances at bringing your thoughts to life. Now that every illicit – and then some – deed can be found in the truly staggeringly enormous web of computer connections, the art of writing is both flourishing and dying.
Can a writer claim the mantle of starving if a computer is used?
Where is the struggle and conflict if spell-check corrects your draft? If Word formats for grammar? If with a click of the mouse every possible scenario is available for study?
I would state that the answer is still yes. I’m not starving by any means and the drama of crumpled paper is fiction because when a writer had to buy said paper it was too precious to waste. It is still yes even though I don’t have to resort to illicit gains in order to finance my obsession; merely push the on-button to activate the computer. Although, writing is still very, very hard on the nerves.
In many ways, writing in the modern computer age is more difficult than ever. Not only are there so many more distractions to overcome but because of the mechanical ease and with limitless resources available, failing to write something, anything, makes a writer feel unworthy of the title.
By Rose D. Kaye, February 4th, 2009